By Tottenham correspondent Tony Hughes
Mauricio Pochettino has revealed he is “boring” in his press conferences to avoid stoking up opponents.
The Tottenham manager, who is renowned for giving little away in his dealings with the media, says his only aim is to remain totally professional.
Pochettino said his conduct was in stark contrast to Cesc Fabregas, who stoked up the rivalry before Tottenham played Chelsea which resulted in three FA charges and also spelt the end of Spurs’ title bid.
The Argentine also claimed it is time the Premier League, Professional Footballers’ Association and League Managers’ Association stepped in to stop players and managers making inflammatory remarks before games.
It comes after Fabregas and Blues team mate Eden Hazard said they were extra motivated to get a result last Monday to stop Chelsea’s fierce rivals Tottenham winning the title.
West Brom boss Tony Pulis – whose side upset Spurs’ title challenge by drawing at White Hart Lane – was also one of several other high-profile managers and players who said they wanted Leicester rather than the north Londoners to win the Premier League.
“Maybe in the last few weeks or months, we know football people maybe don’t behave like professionals, we need to be careful,” Pochettino said, as quoted in the Mirror. “Sometimes my press conferences are boring because I’m very polite or political. No, I am professional. That’s a big difference. I don’t want to be popular. I want to be professional. That’s the most important thing.
“It’s easy to say big things against our enemy because: ‘oh, the people love me, I’m very strong, so I’ll say things like this.’ Come on. We are professional.
“The managers, the league, the players’ association, need to say that we must behave professionally. We need to play, be honest and show integrity and be professional always.”
Fabregas was at the heart of the discord between the Spurs and Chelsea players in Monday’s match after using his pundit’s slot on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football programme to reveal he was rooting for Leicester to win the title.
“When you are professional, not give your opinion, your personal opinion, if I support Tottenham, play against some team which fights for the title or to survive then I can’t give my opinion like a supporter,” Pochettino said to the Mirror. “I need to give my opinion like a professional.
“It’s always dangerous when something happens like that. Maybe in the next few meetings of the Premier League, the managers and also the staff, we need to say that in future we must be careful with all these comments in public.”
In other Tottenham news, chairman Daniel Levy has been talking about Spurs’ season and the plans he has for the summer.